Since May 12, there’s a “terrorizing virus” spreading throughout the world and infecting computers in 150 countries. It is the infamous WannaCry ransomware. A ransomware is a malware that locks a user’s access to their information until the user pays a certain amount of ransom. Computers that are running on Windows 7, XP and some un-updated Windows 10 operation system. The most updated Windows 10 has the security patch for this visus. Since not every part of the world are using the most updated version of Windows 10, this gave a chance to the hacker to have some extortion income. Many prominent companies and institutions became victims of this malware. This ransomware used the security loophole of older Windows computer’s operating system. At the moment, there are more than 200,000 computers had infected, and $50,000 worth of bitcoin is collected. Hence we should update our computer whenever there’s an update.
To computer users that lack of experiences in computer security, this ransomware may seem to be intimidating with its design. With its countdown clock, it is telling the user doesn’t have much time left. The red background makes it looks like a serious malicious virus implemented by some sophisticated hacker. Then the user may simply try to pay the ransom out of fear.Despite of its horrific user interface, it is only a malware that can be removed under procedures. Even the malware locked the user’s screen, and trying to encrypt the user’s data, it is still possible to retrieve back to its previous version and restore their computer. Do not pay the hacker because the hacker can return easily. In addition, bringing the computer to a repairing store will most likely cost less than paying the ransom. Besides, this is not the first ransomware nor going to be the last. There were hackers used ransomwares to extort money from small businesses and organizations. Some hackers believe setting the payment in bitcoin, an anonymous crypto-currency can totally hide them away from the government. However, there are still ways for government agencies like the NSA to trace where the bitcoin going to. The raid of Silk Road, a dark web online black market and confiscated $3 million worth of bitcoin in 2013.